Riding Lightning

 by Shawn Patterson

Metallica has loudly stood at the top of the metal heap since their angry arrival in the early 1980's. With true Metallica chutzpah, lead guitarist Kirk Hammett's solos are unforgiving and merciless. Sure, if you heard one of Kirk's solos played at a sleepy piano bar or "interpreted" by Kenny G, it would sound disappointing and grating. However, delivered behind James Hetfield's skull-crushing guitar rhythms and "I'm gonna vomit on your soul" vocal style, Hammett truly shines.

In this "Ride The Lightning" era lick, we present the essence of Kirk's recorded single-note masterpieces. During this period, one of Kirk's trademarks was to deliver cascading sequences of his favorite minor scales at top speed. Hammett often enhanced those sequences with simple triadic arpeggios (look for the Emi and F#mi arpeggios in this line). Now, go get some puppets.

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